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Recent reviews

All reviews - DVDs (18)

The Hunt for the BTK Killer review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 18 January 2007 01:33 (A review of The Hunt for the BTK Killer)

For 31 years, the serial killer known as BTK raised terror in the small town of Wichita, Kansas. Starting in 1974 and ending in 1991, BTK killed 10 people and resurfaced in 2005, in which the BTK killer was captured. This is the story of how police found, captured, and convicted the vicious killer named Dennis Rader.

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Children of Men review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 18 January 2007 01:30 (A review of Children of Men)

This year I attended for the first time the Venice Film Festival in Italy. I was of course quite excited and bought tickets to some screenings of a few different films I found interesting. Initially Children of Men wasn't in my plans but I was convinced by a friend who was very enthusiastic about it. Now I say I'm glad I bought the tickets! What an amazing film this is. The science fiction genre is just a coat to project into the future the horrors and problems of our current days and many films attempt that ending up, in most cases, failing. This one however succeeds. Succeeds indeed but not only in this... The film blew away nearly everyone in the audience as one of the best action movies we have seen lately, with extremely exciting and brutal chases, gun fights, etc. Don't be put off by this though, the film is as good as it is not because of the action sequences but its amazingly emotional and touching story. The performances of the cast is impressive especially Clive Owen and the newcomer Claire Hope Ashitey who throughout the film develop the relationship between their characters and it's such a joy to see the development. I'm not very good at writing reviews so I think I'll stop know, but I had at least to transmit something to everyone who might be interested in watching this film. Don't pass this one, you won't regret it. In my view one of the few excellent films released this year.

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Even Money review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 18 January 2007 01:22 (A review of Even Money)

There are some incredible performances by an outstanding cast (some will completely surprise you! I mean, who would expect Kelsey Grammar doing a great job in the same movie as Danny DeVito and Forest Whitaker?) It's a really tight script with three separate story lines - it moves well, you get caught up in the excellent characters, and there's never a dull moment.

I could do without the title, but besides that this movie is a winner.

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Mr. Fix It [2006] (REGION 1) (NTSC) review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 18 January 2007 01:08 (A review of Mr. Fix It [2006] (REGION 1) (NTSC))

I was eager to see "Mr. Fix It" because I'm a huge David Boreanaz fan. What I got, though, was a 1-1/2 hour nap. The premise seemed enjoyable: Boreanaz is Lance Valenteen, proprietor of a business called "Mr. Fix It", where dumped men enlist his help to get their girlfriends to take them back.

Among the problems with this movie are the editing, script, and acting. Although I've found Boreanaz delightful in his other film roles (with the exception of that "Crow" movie he did), this was disappointing. At times, his character was interesting and others, flat. The supporting cast reminded me of soap opera day players. I realize it wasn't a big-budget film, but some of the scene cuts and music just didn't seem right.

My advice: watch at your own risk

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The Good Shepherd review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 10 January 2007 12:36 (A review of The Good Shepherd)

The Good Shepherd is an incredibly complex work and one of the finest films of a quality ripe 2006. Oscar winner Eric Roth continues his brilliant work with this original screenplay, named one of the best unproduced scripts in Hollywood in the late 90's. A film about one of the CIA's founding officers isn't a dream project commercially for a studio but thankfully, the quality of the script was too great to ignore.

Shepherd follows the life of Edward Wilson (Damon) through his college years at Yale to his ascension as one of the CIA's founding officers and trusted veterans. His extraordinary dedication to his work comes with an unbearable price as he must sacrifice his family to protect his country. At one point in the film, Wilson faces an enormous choice- does he abandon his ideals for what he believes is right? Would this abandonment render his life, almost solely devoted to his country, meaningless? This, as well as a depiction of the result of Wilson's decision, are just two of the moments of brilliance in The Good Shepherd.

Wilson inhabits a world of betrayal and secrecies only enhancing the irony of the biblical quote inscribed on the CIA's wall- "And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free". While we are given a glimpse into the life of a younger, more vital Wilson, the world he occupies creates the characteristically stolid, humorless man we come to know.

With its vast emotional core, the film seemingly effortlessly navigates one of the most volatile periods in the history of American intelligence while remaining character based. At 165 minutes, it is overlong but remains engaging for the vast majority of its running time. Had a few relatively insignificant scenes been cut, Shepherd could have retained the thrilling and energetic pace it often possesses. However, the length is justifiable as the scope of the film is incredibly large and very few scenes can be deemed unnecessary or dull.

Robert DeNiro's direction far exceeds that in his debut, 1993's "A Bronx Tale". Normally portrayed as a brute, here, DeNiro assuredly handles every moment with an innate tenderness we rarely see in his work. He appropriately treats Shepherd with a precise attention to detail often attributed to some of the greatest directors of our time.

A silently haunting Matt Damon carries the film on his shoulders. Edward Wilson is completely introverted and while Damon internalizes his thoughts, some of the films greatest moments are when emotion unknowingly pours out of Wilson through a mere flicker in his eyes. Angelina Jolie and Michael Gambon deliver very strong turns amidst a one of a kind cast topped off by the return of Joe Pesci, whose last acting stint was 1998's "Lethal Weapon 4".

The Good Shepherd is a film that demands to be seen. It is surprisingly apolitical as Wilson's life and its disintegration are the true story of this epic. While some call it "unsentimental", exactly the opposite is true. It is a testament to Roth's script that a film with such an introverted protagonist provides such a visceral, affecting experience. Shepherd is an intelligent, poignant look at the cost of blind dedication and constant secrecy. The effect this has on Wilson's life is irrevocable as we are taken on a remarkable cinematic journey, one that should be remembered as one of 06's greatest.

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The Good Shepherd review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 10 January 2007 12:30 (A review of The Good Shepherd)

Edward Wilson, the only witness to his father's suicide and member of the Skull and Bones Society while a student at Yale, is a morally upright young man who values honor and discretion, qualities that help him to be recruited for a career in the newly founded Office of Strategic Services (OSS, the predecessor of the Central Intelligence Agency). While working there, his ideals gradually turn to suspicion influenced by the Cold War paranoia present within the office. Eventually, he becomes an influential veteran operative, while his distrust of everyone around him increases to no end. His dedication to his work does not come without a price though, leading him to sacrifice his ideals and eventually his family

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The Guardian [Blu-ray] review

Posted : 11 years, 6 months ago on 10 January 2007 12:28 (A review of The Guardian [Blu-ray])

The US Coast Guard version of "Top Gun" with a little "An Officer and A Gentleman" thrown in: an aging USCG rescue swimmer's team is killed in a horrific rescue mission. Immediately prior to this terrible event, his wife also announced that she cannot take anymore. His first love is always the rescue mission. This leaves him an obviously emotional wreck. His commender gives him a choice - quit or take a position as an instructor at the USCG training facility in Louisiana. Reluctantly he takes the position. Moving into the school, he immediately increases the 18 week curriculum that routinely fails half of the people that attend. Here he meets a young man with unlimited potential, but with some secret that seems to hold him back as a team player. Delving into his past, links are found that make him a psychic twin to the older man. Thrown into the midst of the story is a romance with a local girl. Rescue missions punctuate the beginning and end of the story with the training sessions the center of the film.

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Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker review

Posted : 11 years, 7 months ago on 8 December 2006 09:41 (A review of Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker)

Based on the 1st in the series of books by Anthony Horowitz. Alex Rider (Alex Pettyfer) is a normal school boy, with a normal life. Until his uncle Ian Rider (Ewan McGregor) dies. Alex's life changes forever, as he discovers that his uncle was not, as he thought a banker, but a super MI6 agent who was shot on the way back from his latest assignment. Alex is cleverly manipulated by MI6 to work for him, his mission is to find out what's going on with the Stormbreakers, high tec virtual reality computers that have some kind of virus in them. The main suspect is creator of the Stormbreaker, Darrius Sayle (Mickey Rourke). After a shocking discovery, that nearly causes Alex to lose his life, Alex must return to Britan to stop Sayle and save England. Can he succeed or will his first mission become his last?

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Pulse (Unrated Widescreen Edition) review

Posted : 11 years, 7 months ago on 8 December 2006 09:12 (A review of Pulse (Unrated Widescreen Edition))

Imagine our wireless technologies made a connection to a world beyond our own. Imagine that world used that technology as a doorway into ours. Now, imagine the connection we made can't be shut down. When you turn on your cell phone or log on to your e-mail, they'll get in, you'll be infected and they'll be able to take from you what they don't have anymore -- life.

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Glass House - The Good Mother review

Posted : 11 years, 7 months ago on 8 December 2006 08:56 (A review of Glass House - The Good Mother)

Twenty-five to thirty thousand Jews were issued life-saving certificates of Salvadoran citizenship thanks to the El Salvador Action and its officials: Consul General Jose Arturo Castellanos and his first Secretary, George Mandel-Mantello. This is the story of how one of the world's smallest countries facilitated one of the most successful rescue operations of World War II. In 1938 Colonel Castellanos was assigned to Hamburg to open the consulate of El Salvador, then was sent to Switzerland. In 1942, as Europe was under siege by the Nazis, a wealthy Romanian Jew named George Mandel, who had befriended Castellanos, asked for his help. So Castellanos appointed him First Secretary of El Salvador's consulate in Geneva. When Mandel received his Salvadoran passport, he added "Mantello" to his name in order to sound more Latin. Soon afterward, inspired by the rescue efforts of his contemporaries and driven by the spreading horror of the genocide surrounding him, Mandel-Mantello suggested that they issue Salvadoran passports as rescue tools. Castellanos declined, citing the increased scrutiny of foreign passports, because spies commonly forged them. He instead suggested certificates of Salvadoran citizenship, and thus began one of the greatest humanitarian efforts in the history of the Holocaust. Glass House was filmed over a three year period on location in Central America, Switzerland, Hungary and Spain by the director and his wife Leonor, who is herself a native of El Salvador. The inspiring story of the El Salvador Action, and the Glass House (one of the protected buildings from which Salvadoran citizenship certificates were issued), is told by the sons and daughters of the heroes themselves, as well as survivors who owe their lives to the tiny country with a brave and humble heart.

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